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J-Aggie of the WEEK!

Jewish Aggie of the Week Presents Morgan Howard

Jewish Aggie of the Week Presents

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What is your name?
Morgan Howard

 

Where are you from?
Mansfield, TX

Where did you go to high school?
San Clemente High School (CA) and Lake Ridge High School (TX)

Why did you choose Texas A&M?
I only had two preferences, aside being a distinguished university: a Chabad and a choir… A&M has both, astounding ones at that.

What do you look forward to when coming to Chabad?
I love being able to see all of my sorority sisters and friends at Chabad. It’s such a warm and homey atmosphere (plus there’s always food).

What do you love about Jewish life on campus?
I love that I can walk around and see at least one Jewish Aggie on campus every day. It’s truly such a wonderful thing.

Why do you think it is important to be involved in Jewish life?
Being a part of Jewish life, whether at Chabad or not, truly grounds you. I know that from the minute I walk into the door at Chabad, I immediately feel like whatever issues I have, whether it be with friends, family, school, or work, are gone. Chabad is a one-stop location for therapy, food, homework help, “Manya I need a white dress for initiation by tomorrow”, and so much more.

If you had a dream list for Chabad, what would be on it?
My dream list for Chabad would be to have all the kitchens renovated, a mikveh, and at least one new Ag at every Shabbat meal. OH and a minyan!! (Boys, we need you)

Do you plan on going to graduate school at A&M?
Yes! I want to get my Doctorate of Audiology and specialize in pediatric cochlear implants.

Do you have any siblings?
One cutie pie little sister! (Future Ag)

What is your favorite Jewish food?
Gefilite Fish

What is your favorite food?
Sushi

What is your favorite Jewish childhood memory?
When I was eight, I went to a sleep away camp in the mountains of California. At the time, it seemed like such a beautiful and FUN experience, which it as; however, it was so much more than that. Now that I am older, I realized that Camp Gan Israel of Running Springs truly gave me the foundation for my Judaism.

Have you ever traveled outside of the United States? Which place was your favorite? 
To Israel with a million Jewish Ags and Rabbi.. it was an incredible experience. (If you haven’t gone, talk to Manya and Yossi b/c they can hook you up with a free trip to Israel!!!)

If you could go anywhere in the world where would you go?
Apparently there’s a woman in Tzfat that has a rooftop view of the entire city. Right before Shabbat, she lights like 100 candles and it’s supposedly the most breath-taking experience. I’d want to be there with all of my closest friends.

What is your favorite vacation spot?
I had an amazing time in Cozumel, Mexico with my family this summer- it was definitely on the list of Top 5 vacation spots.

How do you enjoy spending your free time?
I sing for Texas A&M Women’s Chorus, which is definitely my favorite hobby.

What is at the top of your bucket list?
I really really want to zip line in Costa Rica with the monkeys… not sure if it’s the top, but definitely pretty high up there.

Do you have any animals? What is their best trick?
I have one dog, a Chihuahua named Sissy. She’s really good at sleeping all day long, not knowing how to play fetch, and basically acting like a cat.

If you could have one wish for anything in the world what would it be?
MOSHIIIIAAAAACCHHH NOW

What has been your most enjoyable class?
I LOVE Dr. Hernandez’s Sociology courses. He is an incredible, hilarious, and eye-opening teacher.

How did you get involved with Chabad?
The Chabad Shluchim in California sucked me into the void when I was eight. (JK, it’s the best thing that has ever happened to me
)

Jewish Aggie of the Week Presents Ryan Sukenik

 Jewish Aggie of the Week Presents

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What is your name?
Ryan Sukenik 

Where are you from?
Plano, TX 

Where did you go to high school?
Yavneh Academy of Dallas

Why did you choose Texas A&M?
The culture is what brought me here, I wanted to be surrounded by hardworking and dedicated people that would help me succeed and get to where I wanted to be after College.

What is your major and why did you decide to pursue such a degree?Political Science is my major and I originally picked this major because as cliché as it sounds I want to change the world and make it a better place for everyone, I’m not sure exactly what profession I want to go into yet however I know that in whatever I do, I want to help make the world a better place.

What do you look forward to when coming to Chabad?
I look forward to the homie feeling that I’m sure everyone who has been to Chabad can sympathize with, the feeling of belonging.

What do you love about Jewish life on campus?
I love the fact that the Jewish presence, at A&M is not too overwhelming or encompassing, however it is there when you need it and it is one of the most welcoming communities I have ever encountered.

Why do you think it is important to be involved in Jewish life?
I think it’s important to be involved in Jewish life specifically at A&M because of how small of a percent of the population Jews at A&M really are, and because of the potential the community has to be much greater than it ever has before. 

Do you plan on going to graduate school at A&M?
Not sure yet.

 Do you have any siblings?
Yes, a younger sister who is 16 and goes to Booker T. High school in Dallas.

What is your favorite Jewish food?
Matzah ball soup or Latkes with applesauce

What is your favorite food?
Oreo’s

What is your favorite Jewish childhood memory?
Going to Greene Family Camp

What is your favorite Chabad experience until now?
My favorite Chabad experience at A&M would have to be when I visited last year and toured campus, I stopped by the Chabad house and shook the lulav and met everyone there. 

Have you ever traveled outside of the United States? If so, where? Which place was your favorite?
I went to Honduras and some small islands off the coast of South America; I loved these places because it broadened my understanding on how people live in the world.

Have you ever been to Israel? If so, what was the most moving/amazing/inspirational experience you had? 
Not yet, I hope to go on the birthright this year either in the winter or in the summer.

If you could go anywhere in the world where would you go?
Israel

What is your favorite vacation spot?
Bahamas

How do you enjoy spending your free time?
I play Super Smash Bros competitively and I spend most of my free time on that.

What is at the top of your bucket list?
Work with a presidential candidate and help get them elected.

If you could start university again what would you do differently?
I honestly have no regrets so far, and I hope to continue my university experience without any regrets. 

 Do you have any animals? What is their best trick?
I have a dog named Schmoopie and his best trick is he has the sense to know when anything walks past our house and barks every time.

Did you prefer living on campus or off campus? What would you recommend to freshmen?
I prefer living off campus at Callaway house and would recommend any freshman to live here, I have met some great people thus far and love my experience so far.

Do you have a message for future A&M students?
Take advantage of the resources available to you, follow what you love.

What has been your most enjoyable class?
Psychology is my favorite right now, learning about thoughts and the brain is fascinating.

What would enhance Jewish life on campus?
The only thing that could enhance Jewish life at A&M would be more people! 

How did you get involved with Chabad?
I was involved with Chabad back in Plano because my mother is the Summer camp director for them and I was a camp counselor for many years, then when I heard about Chabad at A&M I immediately wanted to get involved and help out where I could.

Do you have plans for after graduation?
None specific yet, hopefully I can figure that out over the next four years.

Jewish Aggie of the Week Presents Erin van Crevald

 Jewish Aggie of the Week Presents

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What is your name?
Erin van Creveld

Where are you from?
Dallas, Texas

Where did you go to high school?
Plano East Senior High School

Why did you choose Texas A&M?
I originally came to A&M because I wanted to pursue a career in Veterinary medicine and because it was close to home. Although I have since changed my career path, I have fallen in love with the atmosphere, Jewish community, Alpha Epsilon Phi family, and friends I have made at Texas A&M and can’t image being anywhere else.

What was your major and why did you decide to pursue such a degree?
I am currently majoring in Meteorology. I decided to pursue this career because of my interest in severe weather and love for math.

What do you look forward to when coming to Chabad?
I look forward to coming to Chabad because of the welcoming atmosphere. It is a place where I feel I can be myself and am accepted for who I am.

What do you love about Jewish life on campus?
I love that although it is smaller compared to some other campuses, it is very close-knit. It is such a united and strong community and something I am so grateful to be a part of.

Do you have any siblings?
Yes, I have two younger sisters and one younger brother.

What is your favorite food?
Pasta

What is your favorite Jewish childhood memory?
My favorite memory from my childhood is spending Rosh Hashanah with my family. Ever since I was little, I can remember sitting around the table with my closest family and friends for hours on end, talking, laughing, and eating. Spending Rosh Hashanah with my family is still something I look forward to every year and will continue to for years to come.

Have you ever traveled outside of the United States? If so, where?
I have traveled to Israel, South Africa, England, Mexico, and the Bahamas. My favorite place was Israel for more reasons than I can even name!

Have you ever been to Israel? If so, what was the most moving/amazing/inspirational experience you had?
Yes! Israel was one of my most favorite places I have ever been to. I especially loved visiting Independence Hall. I was very moved by the experience and enjoyed learning about the history. The trip would not have been the same if it weren’t for my amazing Aggie friends who were there experiencing everything with me.

If you could go anywhere in the world where would you go?
I have always wanted to go to Dubai, Tokyo, or Fiji.

What is your favorite vacation spot?
Every summer my family goes to Cabo San Lucas. I love spending a week or two there relaxing, snorkeling, and going deep sea fishing with my dad.

If you could start university again what would you do differently? Absolutely nothing. I do not regret any decisions I made or didn’t make. I have had such an incredible experience at A&M and wouldn’t change a thing.

Do you have any animals? What is their best trick?
I have three dogs. One of my dogs does a “kosher” trick. When you give him food or a treat and tell him “treif,” he won’t eat it until you say “kosher.”

Did you prefer living on campus or off campus? What would you recommend to freshmen?
I have always lived off campus. Freshman year I lived at The Stack, a student apartment complex directly across from campus, and then sophomore and junior year in a house. I prefer living off campus because of the freedom it gives you. Freshman year, I had to become independent and grow up very quickly since I did not have access to some of the on-campus amenities, like dining plans. For me, living off-campus was the right decision. My advice to freshman about housing would be to take everything into account – Do you have a car? Do you know how to cook? Do you have a place to do laundry? – before making the decision. Determining where to live is a big decision and is one that should be made with a lot of thought.

Do you have a message for future A&M students?
Make the most of every moment. I know a lot of people say that, but your time at A&M truly passes by quicker than you will ever imagine. Don’t be afraid to join an organization you are interested in or make friends with someone sitting next to you in class. You don’t want to end your four (or more) years at A&M with a bunch of “should haves” and “could haves,” but instead with no regrets and a lifetime of amazing memories.

What has been your most enjoyable class?
I really love math, so probably any math class, even the difficult ones. The math class that stands out to me the most is Math 151 because of my professor. JD Kim was one of the funniest and most caring professors I have ever had and he made class so enjoyable. I also enjoy all of my meteorology classes because of the small class size.

How did you get involved with Chabad?
When I was in high school, I came down to A&M for a dance audition. I arrived on a Friday and one of my friends, who already went to A&M, convinced me to go with her to Shabbat at Chabad. I remember being super overwhelmed but loving it. Growing up I also attended a Chabad in Dallas for half of my life, so I was familiar with it. When freshman year began, I would go to Shabbat each week and other Chabad programs. Before I knew it, Chabad had become my home-away-from-home and a place I spend a lot of my time.

Jewish Aggie of the Week Presents Oron Hazi

Jewish Aggie of the Week Presents

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What is your name?

Oron Hazi

Where are you from?

Dallas, Texas

Where did you go to high school?

JJ Pearce High School

Why did you choose Texas A&M?

I toured the campus while I was in high school and fell in love with the place.

What was your major and why did you decide to pursue such a degree?

I am majoring in Computer Science. I took a computer science class in high school and found it to be very enjoyable. I’ve been very good with computer up to that point and found programming to be something I can do for a living and still enjoy it.

What is your favorite book? Why?

The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien. The story in this book is veru unique and I especially enjoyed it. I am also a big fan of the Lord of The Rings and the movies as well.

What do you look forward to when coming to Chabad?

Seeing Rabbi and Manya, the kids, the food, and all the people that come to Chabad. The entire atmosphere is so welcoming and truly feels like a home away from home.

What do you love about Jewish life on campus?

It is a very tight-knit community. Everyone I know is at least somewhat involved in the Jewish community here.

Why do you think it is important to be involved in Jewish life?

It is good to maintain good Jewish values when you are away from home. It was very important for me when I came to Aggieland.

If you had a dream list for Chabad, what would be on it?

More sushi ☺

Do you plan on going to graduate school at A&M?

I do not.

Do you have any siblings?

Yes, a sister who is currently a junior in high school.

What is your favorite Jewish food?

Challah

What is your favorite food?

Sushi

What is your favorite Jewish childhood memory?

Having a large Passover Seder with a lot of extended family members in Israel.

What is your favorite Chabad experience until now?

Truly, I can’t pick a favorite, everything has been wonderful!

Have you ever traveled outside of the United States? If so, where? Which place was your favorite? For what reason?

I have lived in Israel for my entire childhood and it has been an incredible home. I really enjoy coming back and seeing my extended family there as well.

Have you ever been to Israel? If so, what was the most moving/amazing/inspirational experience you had?  

On my birthright trip we went to Independence Hall where I got to see where they signed Israel’s declaration of independence.

If you could go anywhere in the world where would you go?

Venice, I want to see most of Italy in general.

What is your favorite vacation spot?

A beach

How do you enjoy spending your free time?

I enjoy hanging out with all the Jewish Aggies here!

What is at the top of your bucket list?

Graduate

If you could start university again what would you do differently?

Start my homework earlier.

Do you have any animals? What is their best trick?

I do not.

Did you prefer living on campus or off campus? What would you recommend to freshmen?

I have always lived off campus, however I would recommend having your own kitchen, it helps a lot!

If you could have one wish for anything in the world what would it be?

World Peace.

What has been your most thrilling experience in your life?

I explored a cave in Israel while I was on birthright.

Do you have a message for future A&M students?

Enjoy your college years; you are here to learn, but also to explore, interact, and enjoy new experiences.

What has been your most enjoyable class?

I’m currently taking a data science class, and it has been a topic I’ve been fascinated with for quite some time.

What has been your best job on campus?

I worked the summer after my freshman year doing network research on campus.

If you were able to have one superpower what would it be?

Teleportation, so I could go anywhere I want to

What would enhance Jewish life on campus?

More Jewish Aggies!

How did you get involved with Chabad?

I came to a Shabbat dinner before I started school and I’ve been coming back ever since.

Do you have plans for after graduation?

I plan on working full-time.

Jewish Aggie of the Week Presents Sam Trust

 Jewish Aggie of the Week Presents

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What is your name? 

• Samantha Trust

Where are you from?

• Long Island, NY

Where did you go to high school?

• Harborfields in NY

Why did you choose Texas A&M?

• When I visited A&M I completely fell in love with it: the campus, the traditions, and their amazing architecture program. I grew up in Texas and I knew I needed to come back; it just made sense. 

What was your major and why did you decide to pursue such a degree?

• Urban Planning. I chose this major because it’s extremely important to me to preserve to minimal space we have left, yet still be able to use it. The Waller Creek Conservancy in Austin and the Riverwalk in San Antonio are two places that inspired me to pursue this career.

What is your favorite book? Why?

• Of all time? Hmm. I would have to say Still Alice by Lisa Genova or Nine Stories by J.D. Salinger. I loved Still Alice because it’s an extremely well-written book that has a great story. It’s not a typical story, with a rise or climax, it just seems real. However, J.D. Salinger is my favorite author, I started reading his stories for my English class when I was in high school and fell in love. My first book of his was Catcher in the Rye, another of my favorites. His metaphors are extremely poetic and he makes even the darkest meanings have the brightest stories. 

What do you look forward to when coming to Chabad?

• Seeing the kids, Rabs and Manya, and all my friends.

What do you love about Jewish life on campus?

• It’s so welcoming. Even though I wasn’t all that involved when I was in High School, I am still completely accepted. Chabad is sort of a safe haven for me, I don’t have to pretend to be someone I’m not. 

Why do you think it is important to be involved in Jewish life?

• It’s important because all around the world, Jews are still persecuted. We should take advantage of the Jewish home we are given because a lot of people don’t have one.

If you had a dream list for Chabad, what would be on it?

• Manya and I have this deal that when they get the money, I’ll come back and design the landscaping. On our list is a living wall where the fencing is and everything else we will figure out.

Do you plan on going to graduate school at A&M?

• I would love to, but they don’t have the program I’d like to pursue. 

Do you have any siblings?

• Yes, I have one sister. She’s my best friend.

What is your favorite Jewish food?

• My grandmother’s Latkes or her Matzah Ball soup

What is your favorite food?

• Japanese Food or Tacos

What is your favorite Jewish childhood memory?

• Making Latkes with my mom

What is your favorite Chabad experience until now?

• Chabad After Hours. Just hanging out with Rabbi and Manya and learning from them, speaking with them, off the record.

Have you ever traveled outside of the United States? If so, where? Which place was your favorite? For what reason? 

• I’ve been to a lot of places: England, Italy, Australia, New Zealand, Israel, and the Bahamas. I’d say England was my favorite because I got to see the castle they used to film the Harry Potter movies. Next fall, I’ll be heading to Bonn, Germany for study abroad, so I think that will end up being my favorite place.

Have you ever been to Israel? If so, what was the most moving/amazing/inspirational experience you had? 

• Yes, I went on Birthright in December 2015. The most moving aspect of the trip for me was either the Holocaust Museum or praying at the Western Wall.

If you could go anywhere in the world where would you go?

• I really want to go to Greece. The architecture there is gorgeous and I’ve always wanted to jump off those cliffs. 

What is your favorite vacation spot?

• Mohonk Mountain House in Upstate New York. It’s got gorgeous mountains, hiking trails, a beautiful pond. It’s just an amazing place to read, relax, and reflect on life.

How do you enjoy spending your free time?

• I love to read when I’m not working on school stuff.

What is at the top of your bucket list?

• Go to Europe

If you could start university again what would you do differently?

• Nothing. 

Do you have any animals? What is their best trick?

• No, but I really want a dog when I graduate

Did you prefer living on campus or off campus? What would you recommend to freshmen?

• When I was a freshman, I lived off campus which was fine. TAMU isn’t like other universities where you feel excluded if you live off campus. Probably half the incoming freshman live off campus and you don’t really miss out on anything. You can still get the dorm experience living off-campus. College Station doesn’t really revolve around the campus and you only need to be there for classes. 

If you could have one wish for anything in the world what would it be?

• More wishes

What has been your most thrilling experience in your life?

• When I was in high school, my friends and I went to Six Flags Great Adventure. There was this roller coaster there called Kingda Ka. It’s the second tallest roller coaster in the world and it consists of being slingshot from 0 to 128 miles per hour then going straight up and straight down at a 90 degree angle. The first time I rode that rollercoaster, it was night time, which sort of made it scarier and better at the same time. When we got to the top, we slowed down, it felt so calm while we were up there, kind of like the world had stopped. The view was gorgeous, you could see all the other coasters, the stars, and a skyline in distance. It had to have been both the most peaceful and adrenaline full moment I’ve ever experienced. 

Do you have a message for future A&M students?

• It goes by quickly, so enjoy it. Make sure to join both social and academic clubs, and don’t postpone your work or studying till last minute. You might want to go to grad school, so keep a well-rounded resume. Don’t forget to have fun every once in a while.

What has been your most enjoyable class?

• I just started it two days ago, but I really love Sociology 312. My professor, Dr. Dudley Poston, is hilarious, makes the information so easy to understand. Despite him being 75, he acts as if he is 30 and is extremely relatable. The way he speaks about Demography, or his family is inspiring and when he speaks I am completely exhilarated. I can tell this is going to be my favorite class and he’ll be my favorite professor.

If you were able to have one superpower what would it be?

• The ability to read minds or teleport

What would enhance Jewish life on campus?

• More Jews!!

How did you get involved with Chabad?

• Manya messaged me on Facebook in August of my freshman year and was so welcoming and wonderful. I came to a few events and eventually became a regular.

Do you have plans for after graduation?

• Graduate School, I plan to pursue my Masters in Historic Preservation.

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